Building Upgrades and Repairs Over the Years
There have been few upgrades to the Central Library since its original construction. Around 1988, part of the third floor was finished and has been rented to the regional library system since that time. Bonding costs were re-paid from that rental income.
The fire alarm system was replaced in 2005; the original chiller in 2006 and two original boilers were replaced in 2003. The freight elevator’s hydraulics were replaced in 2005-06; a roof was replaced in 2007.
These major upgrades occurred because of emergency situations: the Library was cited for an inoperable fire alarm system and fined several hundred dollars per day (later waived); it took nine months to replace the inoperable freight elevator’s hydraulic system and that was partially funded from a donation. The roof was leaking over books, over computers and causing substantial damage, To replace the chiller, the Library had to dig a large hole in the parking lot and tear down a foundation wall in order to bring in the new chiller. The two boilers were on their last legs and providing heat on a sporadic basis.
In 2011, a new skylight replaced the leaky, inefficient skylight original to the building. Funded with federal money, the skylight is constructed of 42 Low-e, argon-filled, fitted glass panels, each with an average weight of 300 pounds. The 14 cylindrical light fixtures contain compact fluorescent lights that use less than half of the wattage of the former lights. A celestial light sensor determines the amount of light coming through the skylight and controls the operation of the new lights prompting them to illuminate only when additional light is needed and in tandem with the library’s occupancy schedule. In addition to aesthetic form and function, substantial energy savings are expected.